Thursday, August 30, 2007

Tough Mama

I am finally learning to be tough with my youngest, at least on some things. I was always the one who would baby my kids if they didn't like something or didn't want to do something. I always felt bad if they weren't enjoying life, as though it was my responsibility to turn their moods to happiness no matter what the situation. Well no more, or not so much as before.

My son started school yesterday and it went off without a hitch. I was surprised because every time I have brought up school in the last week he did not want to think or talk about it one bit. He felt he needed more time off. In fact, he said that we should not have gone our road trip because it took time away from being home doing whatever he wanted. Strange comment I thought, because he loved our trip, we had a good time and he really did do what he wanted to most of the time. But he said he wanted those three weeks back.

So this morning he did not want to get up and when I finally forced him out of bed he started his tirade about how school is a waste of time and how he could learn everything he needs to know from books and how he learns nothing there. It is all a flashback from last school year.

This is not a fun way to start the day for him or for me. I have discovered that no amount of discussion or reasoning works to change this. Not so amazing, really when does that help if a kid doesn't want to do something?

What to do? Get tough. Make him get out of bed and get dressed. Say yes I heard how you feel now enough and time to get ready and go. Do not discuss reasons for not going to school. Make sure that food is eaten! Put on shoes, glasses, brush hair, fill backpack. All the while ignoring the litany of complaints streaming from his mouth.

We make it out the door just barely on time. Complaints cease and he starts running down the driveway? He trips and falls because his backpack is so heavy. As soon as he goes down he yells " I'm alright ". We check out the milkweed at the end of the driveway and finally find the first monarch caterpillar of the year. The bus comes and he jumps on and is gone for the day.

Now I am not sure how it will be next week when he goes back to school. He is pretty adamant about not wanting to be there and that never stopped last year. I had to make him go to the very last day. Some days there is no trouble and he gets ready and goes, but I know that it usually doesn't last. So I have learned to be tough, to shut out the complaints and make him go and above all do not feel sorry for him, that is one of the worst things you can do for a child.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Yard Sale find

Found this recently. It struck my fancy and I found it amusing and well I thought it was worth $1. Don't you?

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Fair Week is over...

...until next year that is. Once a year comes the time for pig races, the beef obstacle course, 4-H displays, demolition derby, FAIR FOOD, bicycle raffles, and the strange but beloved midway. We had 3 visits and many hours there although compared to some we were barely there. It is THE social event of the year in out little place on the planet and I have a love-hate relationship with it all. It is also the sign that summer is over, that school starts next week and I need to make an appointment to have a tune up for the furnace and an oil delivery. All very sobering thoughts, summer is fleeting especially up here in Maine. I do love to wear sweaters though...

Sunday, August 19, 2007

My brother's a tool

At least, that is what it says on his license plate! Brother Kenny came up to visit for a night and we had a good old time. I took him to the our favorite local winery for a wine and gin tasting, yum! We came away with our favorite gin, it is such good stuff. If you like gin and live nearby do yourself a favor and try some. Then we were off to our favorite local farm stand for salad makings and cheese and donuts and biscuits and...well I like it there too. We had a great dinner and wine, and stayed up late talking. We never did get to the gin (next time he needs to stay 2 nights) so I sent it home with Kenny. Oh and did I forget to mention his awesome motorcycle that he drove up on? It is a BMW and well, check it out. Way cool. I live my motorcycle fantasy vicariously, even if he is a tool.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

My Dad

My Dad would have been 78 today. This was his first birthday since he left this world last December. It was a sad and hard day for me, I miss him a lot. It is my brother Kenny's birthday also (Happy Birthday, Kenny!). I wish I lived closer to my family on a day like today. Misery loves company, right? So I decided to make some of his favorite foods to honor the day, Norwegian Hamburgers and a Cream Layer Cake with Berries. Food Therapy, not to be underestimated. It actually helped, I was glad to be in the kitchen and busy for a few hours. I had a purpose. We toasted my Dad with wine and had a great meal! I miss him but know that life goes on and that is how he would want me to feel.

Norwegian Hamburgers! Lots and lots of butter!

And Cake to top off the evening! Yum!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Last days of our trip

Here are a few more shots taken in North Carolina while visiting eldest child Cor. We only spent a short few days in the groovy little city of Asheville, where he lives. We ate lots of good food and walked around downtown quite a bit, lots of interesting shops to check out, it is an artsy little town. He took us down Chicken Alley (love the name) which had all sorts of cool grafitti and painting on every available surface, including a giant picture of Yoda, unfortunately we had left the camera in the car so no pics of that! These pics are taken while walking next to Swannanoa River, after a lovely brunch in Black Mountain. It was an interesting experience to go and visit my grown up child who doesn't really need me anymore. It is quite a transition for me. There are so many little things that you notice and have to make adjustments. Many things I think are important just don't matter to him. He's his own man. When you teach you children to think for themselves it is a suprise when they go ahead and do this and it doesn't agree with what you think!